Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Dangerous Beauty: the Abduction of Ganymede, Vergil's Aeneid 5.250-257

TRIGGER WARNING: Abduction

The common denominator in abduction myths is not the victim's gender, but their beauty.


victori chlamydem auratam, quam plurima circum                250

purpura maeandro duplici Meliboea cucurrit,

intextusque puer frondosa regius Ida

velocis iaculo cervos cursuque fatigat

acer, anhelanti similis, quem praepes ab Ida

sublimem pedibus rapuit Iovis armiger uncis;               255

longaevi palmas nequiquam ad sidera tendunt

custodes, saevitque canum latratus in auras.

--Vergil's Aeneid, 5.250-257

He gave to the winner a decorated chlamys (garment), embroidered in purple and gold.

It depicted this scene: a royal youth [Ganymede] tracing down swift stags on fertile Mt. Ida with his spear—you could almost see him panting!—and Jove’s eagle snatched him from Ida with its talons, while the youth’s guardians raised their palms up to the stars in vain, their hunting dogs filling the skies [with their barking].


VERGIL / VIRGIL

MAP:

Name:  Publius Vergilius Maro

Date:  70 BCE – 21 BCE

Works:  Aeneid*

              Eclogues

             Georgics

 

REGION  1

Map of Roman Empire Divided into Regions


BIO:

Timeline:

Vergil was born in Mantua (Cisalpine Gaul, located in northern Italy) and lived during the tumultuous transition of Roman government from republic to monarchy. His masterpiece, the Aeneid, tells the story of Aeneas’ migration from Troy to Italy; it was used for centuries as the pinnacle of Roman literature.

 GOLDEN AGE ROME

Timeline of Roman Literature with "Golden Age" highlighted



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